This year, we took our proprietary OperationAll programming virtual with an amazing panel on November 18th.
Linda Hicks, President of Women & Hi Tech, and board member Tiffany White kicked off the event in agreement that more involvement from male allies earlier in their careers would have helped them feel more welcomed and empowered in their roles as engineers.
Then, we got to hear tips, insights, and anecdotes about male allyship from our panel of experts. Here are a few of the gems we heard from each participant:
Doug Theis, Director of National Strategy at Expedient
“If leadership is not modeling and communicating about appropriate culture, then it’s hard for others to follow. That’s where men need female allies to give them honest feedback and even call them out when behavior is acting as a barrier, rather than a bridge.”
Chris Fultz, Program Executive, B-52 / F130 at Rolls-Royce
“Not recognizing the value of a woman’s input because there is a man you trust more can be a very harmful behavior. This even extends to job postings. Be aware of how you are listing what is required for a role versus what is desired.”
Calvin Hendryx-Parker, Chief Technology Officer and Co-founder of Six Feet Up
“You can’t deal with a situation if you don’t start with your own behaviors and reactions. Men may tend to cut people off because we have a great idea and want to express it, but it’s been important for me to learn to pause and give room for everyone’s voice to be heard.”
Wayne Patrick, Chief Revenue Officer at AIS
“Make the issue personal. Give it the ‘what if’ test. What would you want done if a woman in your life was going through the experiences of your colleagues? When the issue becomes real to you in this way, you will be a better listener and a better advocate.”
Ben Phillips, Director in the Audit and Assurance Services, Katz, Sapper, & Miller and Treasurer of Women & Hi Tech.
“Allow yourself time to practice allyship. Give yourself the kindness to take baby steps and work toward building connections and self-awareness. Don’t assume you know what opportunities people want, what they want to learn, or that you can speak for them.”
Listen to the full panel recording to learn how each panelist defines allyship, the strategies for equity and inclusion that have worked at their organizations, and what to do in tense situations. Thank you again to all these experts for sharing their stories and perspectives! We are so grateful to have these allies in our mission to change the landscape for women in STEM and make these industries equally inclusive to all.